Valentine’s Day

There are so many ways to celebrate February 14th. There’s the traditional candlelight dinner, sending valentines to the children in your life, bringing flowers to your mother or grandmother, or perhaps some special tradition you have developed for yourself.

What comes to your mind when you think of Valentine’s Day? Most likely it’s a mix of memories from different periods in your life.

valentine birt

My earliest memories of the special day are from grade school. I remember going up to the dime store on the town square to buy boxes of valentines. Then the thrill of delivering them to the handmade envelopes taped to our desks and the even bigger thrill of discovering what was inside my envelope. I still remember one valentine I received in the second grade that absolutely dazzled me: a little puppy ran with a pale blue ribbon in its mouth, among hearts and flowers and silver glitter.

I also remember weaving strips of red and white paper to make a heart basket for my mom. And I remember the tiny red heart-shaped boxes of chocolates from my parents.

Many years later, I remember reading Chaucer’s “The Parliament of Fowls” in a medieval literature class, a raucous telling of the pairing up of birds for the winter, and possibly the first reference to Valentine’s Day as a day for lovers. And more recently on my way into work, passing stores with hearts and cupids in the windows, and the flower stalls bursting with bunches of roses and mixed bouquets.

Petrossian hearts

I like that in the heart of winter, often so cold and snowy, there is one day set aside for the expression of love.

Whether you celebrate traditionally or in a way that is uniquely yours, I wish you a day of love and tenderness and beauty.